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Students engaged in market survey

News   Joseph Ulemu   August 24, 2021
PIC: Students involved in the survey
Fourth-year Bachelor of Environmental Science and Technology (Food Science) students on Saturday, August, 21st 2021, engaged in a day-long Market Survey at Limbe, Blantyre Markets and Chain stores surrounding the institution, as part of their assignment in Food Legislation and Safety. The focus was on packing, labelling and hygiene practices.

The market survey was in conjunction with Consumers Association of Malawi. Its aim was to enable students appreciate and better understand issues affecting consumers in as far as food quality and safety is concerned. 

The students who were split into two groups, went round the said markets and chains stores where they interviewed different people on a wide range of food items they sell. The interviews probed into how those selling food items such as perishables, cooking oil, meat and meat products manage their businesses to ensure that the food is fit for human consumption.

They inquired on how sellers ensure hygiene of their business premises and whether their premises and commodities were inspected by the City Assembly. They also interviewed them on how long they keep assorted food items on market and how they are disposed off in case of damage or expiry.

Lecturer for the Food Legislation and Safety module, Dr. Gertrude Sitolo Banda, who is also the Acting Dean of Students, said that such market surveys are part of students’ academic activities. She further said that these assignments give them a chance to exercise their rights and responsibilities as consumers.

“Doing this market survey, gives them an opportunity to appreciate what they learn and should apply the theoretical framework into practice. Being final year students, we emphasise much on the application of the knowledge and skills acquired through the years as we prepare them for the industry,” said Banda.

One of the students, Obvious Charles, expressed her gratitude for the activity they undertook. She added that it has complemented a lot to their theoretical understanding of the course.

Said Charles “The survey has helped me to easily apply the knowledge gained. As food scientists, we have the responsibility to ensure that the food products are safe for consumption and raise an alarm any anormalies are noted. Basically the products have to conform to standards recommended by the MBS in terms of packaging as well as labelling."


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